Ripple signs Middle-East largest bank to promote XRP utility

abdelaziz Fathi

QNB Group, the biggest bank in Qatar and the largest financial institution in the Middle East, is joining RippleNet to tap its increasingly popular blockchain solution for cross-border payments and settlement.

QNB has adopted the RippleNet technology to roll out a direct remittance service for money transfers from Qatar to the Philippines, according to an announcement from the Ripple team. The move also involves China Bank, one of the top private universal banks in the Philippines, to establish a connection and offer this service.

Qatar National Bank (QNB) is the most valuable banking brand in the MEA region with a value worth $7.0 billion, ranking at 45th in the top 50 global banking brands worldwide.

In 2021, the group’s net profit reached $3.6 billion while total assets value swelled to $300 billion.  Through its subsidiaries and associate companies, QNB extends to more than 31 countries across three continents through 1,000 locations, with an ATM network of more than 4,500 machines.

Navin Gupta, managing director, South Asia and MENA at Ripple, stated: “QNB is our biggest partner in the MENA region, and we are delighted to strengthen this partnership on RippleNet to additional countries continuously. The Philippines is one of the largest remittance receivers globally. We are pleased to connect QNB with China Bank to process remittances from Qatar to the Philippines via Ripple Net.”

Adel al-Malki, general manager, QNB Group Retail Banking, said; “QNB has always been a pioneer financial technology accelerator in Qatar and the region. Our partnership with Ripple will provide our customers with a frictionless and safe experience to send funds in a way that fits their lifestyle.”

The San Francisco-based blockchain payments company has been pushing ahead to bring faster and cheaper cross-border payments using XRP in the Middle East.

Through On-Demand Liquidity, RippleNet utilizes XRP as a bridge between two currencies, thus lowering operational costs, unlocking capital, and enables the users to avoid pre-funding accounts on each side of a transaction.

Today’s partnership with QNB means things are shifting for Ripple’s MENA business into a higher gear. RippleNet, which already has attracted over 300 financial institutions, has signed an existing roster of financial institutions and money transfer companies.

The MENA region is home to two of the top three remittance corridors in the world, namely Saudi Arabia and United Arab. The two countries had $78 billion in remittances in 2021.

Supported by its new regional headquarter in Dubai, Ripple already has logged a 4X growth in transaction volume year-to-date versus all of 2021.

Last year, Ripple has signed Al Ansari Exchange, a UAE-based foreign exchange and money transfer company, to use RippleNet Cloud. Ripple’s cloud-based financial network technology facilitates same-day remittances to many countries.

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